Chinese land grab in Sunbury “good for local economy”

The $40 million sale of a 206-hectare residential site south of Sunbury to Chinese investors represents a great opportunity for the growing town, a long-time councillor believes.

Cr Jack Ogilvie said the site, at 725 Sunbury Road, will be covered by a precinct structure plan being worked on by the Metropolitan Planning Authority (MPA) and Hume council.

He said the new area, to be known as Sunbury South, could include a new train station, schools and industrial and commercial centres to provide ‘‘more jobs than Sunbury has ever seen’’.

As reported by

Star Weekly online, the site was believed to have been sold to a partnership including Shanghai Ceyuan Investment Management Centre and a Melbourne-based Chinese businessman.

The land includes Jacksons Creek frontage and could become home to 1500-1700 homes.

According to the MPA, the 800-hectare Sunbury South precinct will eventually lead to the construction of close to 10,000 houses, a town centre, schools, open space and community centres. There are also plans for industrial and commercial centres that will generate almost 7000 new jobs.

The plan is expected to be finalised sometime next year.

Cr Ogilvie said sale of the land next to Craiglee Vineyard would help give Sunbury a critical mass to attract new infrastructure.

‘‘Sunbury is a great place to live. We’ve got people lining up,’’ Cr Ogilvie said.

‘‘People say that development will create infrastructure problems, but developers will have to contribute to all that infrastructure [through the growth areas infrastructure contribution and developer contributions].’’

Cr Ogilvie said the council would continue to push for projects such as the outer metropolitan ring road and Bulla bypass to be brought forward and ease traffic woes.

‘‘Some people will say they don’t want Sunbury to grow, but that’s out of our hands because the state government has decided to expand the growth boundary,’’ he said. ‘‘Our role is to make sure what is supposed to happen happens.’’

Cr Ogilvie said there was no reason for people to be concerned about foreign investment.

‘‘This is a great opportunity for Sunbury. We can’t be prejudiced about those who want to invest in the area.’’


Australian Financial Review said the sale had been touted as the biggest residential subdivision site bought by Chinese buyers.

Hume council’s city sustainability director, Kelvin Walsh, said the site fronted the creek, included slopes and presented challenges the

MPA would need to consider in integrating these developments into the rest of the Sunbury South precinct structure plan.